So, I’m sure you all remember last year’s Christmas Tree Hunting Expedition, which began with my father donning an orange prison jumpsuit and ended with D making up total bullshit about how one should pick out a Christmas tree.
As Christmas drew closer this year, we went back out to hunt down a new Christmas tree last weekend. Somehow, this always turns out to be an ordeal. This year was no different.
For starters, after last year’s serious lack of trees at the tree farm we had been accustomed to using, D, Velma, myself, and my mother all thought it would be a good idea if we found somewhere else to buy our trees. However, since my dad is seemingly incapable of buying anything except the very cheapest he can find of whatever he is seeking out, this wasn’t going to be an option. No way were we going to be able to get him to give up his $7 Bargain Christmas Tree. And so we headed back out to the same Christmas tree farm.
Luckily, this year there was no orange prison jumpsuit involved. Dad appeared fairly normal in his snowsuit, and I donned 3 layers of clothing to keep out the cold. Typical Christmas tree hunting things, as I’m sure you can reason. However, when we arrived at the Christmas tree farm, we were confronted with a very large sign which read:
This sign was hung up beyond the locked gates which were clearly meant to keep us out of the Christmas tree farm. Behind the locked gates and covering every inch of ground near the “BUSINESS CLOSED” sign and out through the remaining trees were giant dead plants and overgrown grass, making it clear that no one had mowed the property or bothered to take care of the plants for some time – possibly since last year’s expedition.
So, as you probably guessed if you know my father, we went around the gate, drove over all the dead plants, and promptly got out of our vehicles to inspect what trees were left.
Like I said, this is my dad we’re talking about.
D, Velma, myself, and my mother attempted to protest. First of all, I really didn’t want to get booked on a charge of tree theft. I can see it now – the officers shouting through the bullhorn, ‘Drop that tree, lady, before someone gets hurt!’ and my huge pregnant self waddling up the hill anyways, tree in tow, daring them to a standoff. D also thought it likely that the land had been sold and we weren’t even stealing from who we thought we were stealing from. Tree theft is just not our thing, apparently.
However, as usual, wonder dad had a solution. Apparently he knows the people who own the tree farm (if they still own it, anyways) and he said he would go drop off money to their house for the trees. I still wasn’t feeling spectacular about this (I mean, really, how well does he know the people if he didn't know the tree farm was closed?), but at this point felt fairy trapped and coerced. Always a good feeling concerning one’s Christmas tree, don’t you think?
So we all stood there and looked at the Christmas trees, trying to decide if there was one worth stealing- er, I mean, buying. Here’s where the second problem comes in: all the trees looked half dead to me. Every tree there had random spots of brown needles hanging off of them, leading me to believe that perhaps the trees weren’t overly healthy. This concerns me a great deal as I’m really not down with placing a giant fire hazard inside of my home for the sake of saving money on Christmas decorating.
I voiced this concern.
My dad started picking the brown needles off the nearby trees in an attempt to make them look completely green.
I was not fooled by this tactic, but apparently D was. While my back was turned, he and my dad somehow managed to not only pick out a tree for my house, but to cut it down and start dragging it away as well. I’m not really sure how I managed to miss this, but I somehow became the proud owner of a half-dead, possibly stolen Christmas tree before I even knew what was happening.
At this point Velma had located a tree that actually looked like it might not be dead. Possibly. I mean, it was hard to tell at this point. I figured, what the hell, and walked over to it with her to inspect it. I mean, at this point I figured I’d done too much damage already to turn around and walk away. Cleverly, Velma claimed she didn’t need a Christmas tree this year, but this one would be great for mom and dad.
Why didn’t I think of that?
They cut down the new tree and hauled it off, and that was pretty much the end of the story. We didn’t get arrested for theft or tree smuggling, and as far as I know my dad is paying the people he knows $14 for our two sad little trees. I suspect they may give him a discount if they have any idea what state the trees were in.
We put our tree up the next day, cutting off the very bottom of the stump so that the tree could drink, just like I have been taught to do. That was on Sunday. It is now Tuesday. I have only watered the tree twice. Twice. Now, anybody who has ever cut down their own tree knows this is not normal. Normally, you have to water the tree right away, and then it runs out of water within a few hours and you have to water it again. Then you have to water it each morning and each evening to make sure it has enough. I have watered this tree twice – and neither time was it anywhere close to being out of water. It simply isn’t drinking much. To me, this is an indication that the tree is probably either half dead or, possibly, 3/4 dead. Hey, maybe it’s more like 9/10 dead. Who knows? We still haven’t put lights on it yet, so there’s a chance we may try to redeem ourselves with another choice. I guess we’ll see how things look by this weekend.
On the upside, none of the needles look brown to me. But then again, D could just be picking them off.